Different Types of Birthmarks
Birthmarks: what are they?
A birthmarks can be a little spot which adds a touch of beauty and uniqueness to your li’l one’s face. Some birthmarks may be downright ugly. Birthmarks are nothing but patches of color or marks on the skin of babies that are present right at birth or appear shortly after. They generally grow in size for up to a year, after which they start to lighten or fade. They vary in size, shape and color. Most birthmarks are flat, but there are also other types of raised birthmarks.
Types of birthmarks
Some of the common types of birthmarks are as follows:
- Mongolian Spots: These are types of brown birthmarks that appear on darker skinned babies. They are blackish-blue in color and are found on the lower back and buttocks of children. They are a result of excessive pigmentation and tend to fade over time.
- Black or Blue Moles: Moles can come in different sizes and can vary from light brown to almost black in color. Moles tend to become smaller with the growth of baby but do not completely resolve by themselves. Large moles that tend to itch or bleed should be shown to a doctor.
- Hemangiomas: Also known as strawberry marks, these show up as flat, red spots on the skin. They slowly become raised and deeper red in color. Their growth tends to slow down between 4 to 5 months after which they slowly tend to fade. They tend to leave a stretched or wrinkled skin behind, particularly if the marks are large.
- Angel’s kisses or Stork bites: These are patches of slightly reddened skin that are found on the face or back of the head and neck of babies. They are caused by an expansion of the blood vessels near the surface of the skin. Patches on the face tend to fade while those on the neck may not.
- Port Wine Stains: These marks appear on the face and look like the stain marks of juices. They are purple, red or pink in color. They tend to grow darker and bigger with age. Port wine stains near the eyes and head may indicate problems in the brain and vision and should be looked into by a doctor. They are again due to presence of dilated blood vessels underneath giving them the hint of port wine colour.
Treatment of birthmarks
Most birthmarks are harmless, and the best course of action is often to do nothing at all. Remember that there are different types of birthmarks and the treatment for them must be as that suggested by the doctor. Treatments purely for cosmetic reasons may not work, be painful or may backfire. It is important to realize that some birthmarks cannot be treated.
- Laser: Laser therapy is recommended for birthmarks on the surface of the skin such as Port wine stains.
- Steroids: Doctors may recommend topical steroids or may inject medication in the birthmark directly to control its growth or to shrink it.
- Surgery: Surgery may be used as a last resort to permanently remove the birthmark if other treatments have failed or if the birthmark is interfering with routine life.
Disclaimer: The information in the article is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your doctor.
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